Sporobolus Heterolepis: Prairie Dropseed Information and Care

Sporobolus Heterolepis, or Prairie Dropseed, is a beautiful, slender, clumping grass. Why should you consider it and how to grow it?

Prairie dropseed is a grass that adds a lovely touch to any garden. In late July, they grow a flurry of small pink and brown spike-like blooms on their thin stems. In autumn, their leaves change from green to gold. 

In this article, we’ll introduce you to this unique plant and how to care for it in your garden.

General Information

Prairie dropseed is one of the most beautiful types of grass; it grows in a clump of slender, deep green grass blades that arch downward. It gets its name from the small spherical seeds that fall from the plant’s hull in autumn.

Prairie dropseed is a perennial that can grow up to 2 feet tall. Its leaves turn a beautiful coppery-orange in autumn before fading to a cream color in the winter. It also emits an aroma that’s a blend of cilantro and freshly toasted almonds. 

tall grasses with pink flowers

Care and Maintenance

Prairie dropseed grows in dry to medium well-drained soil, although it can easily thrive in any soil type. Plant it where it can get at least 6 – 8 hours of direct sunlight each day until it’s established.

These plants are drought-tolerant, low maintenance, and rarely become diseased or infested with pests. For best results, plant the seed in autumn or early spring. 

tall red grass by the walkway

How to Use Prairie Dropseed in Your Landscape

This plant is an excellent choice for mixed plantings, meadow or prairie plantings, and modern landscapes because it’s easy to cultivate, attractive, and hardy. It’s also frequently used as a groundcover or border plant, where it can blend in with other plants.

Companion Plants

This lovely plant beautifully compliments these garden gems: 

1. David Howard Dahlia

The David Howard dahlia has vibrant apricot-colored blooms that grow atop dark purple foliage. Its blooms can grow as large as 4 inches in diameter.

For best results, plant it in full sun in well-drained soil. Trim their blooms frequently to encourage more to grow and feed with a potash-rich fertilizer to prolong blooming.

david howard dahlia blooming in the garden

2. Toothpick Weed

Toothpick weed is a beautiful annual or biennial plant with clusters of white umbrella-shaped flowers that typically bloom from early summer to late fall. Its foliage resembles rosemary sprigs. Toothpick weed can grow to be 5 inches wide, so it makes a great filler flower for gardens. 

This plant grows well in moderate shade but thrives in full sun. Plant toothpick weed in nutrient-rich soil that has a pH of 7.0 or higher and ensure it stays moist.

This low-maintenance plant adds charm to any garden, and its flowers attract birds, butterflies, and bees that can help pollinate your garden. 

little toothpick weed flowers

3. Chinese Aster

The Chinese aster is a low-maintenance annual that has puffy flowers that can grow to be 3 – 5 inches in diameter. Its flowers bloom in hues of red, pink, purple, blue, and white. They grow between 12 – 36 inches. 

Chinese Asters are hardy plants that grow best in well-drained, loamy soil, and it grows just as well in full sun as in partial shade. It doesn’t need much water, which makes it ideal in arid climates.

Grow these gorgeous plants in flowerbeds or flowerpots and place them on your balcony or patio.

blooming pink chinese aster

4. Profusion Zinnia

Profusion zinnias are unique in that they grow as densely packed leaves in a mound formation. These mounds can be as tall as 18 inches and up to 24 inches wide. Profusion zinnias bloom in a variety of colors and can have single or double blossoms. 

This zinnia is hardy and will thrive in all climates with little or no maintenance. Plant it in moist, well-draining soil and in full sun. They’re also disease and drought-resistant, heat and humidity tolerant, and don’t require regular pruning.

Because they attract so many birds and butterflies, they make excellent additions to flowerbeds and landscaping borders. They also look great as a groundcover or in patio planters.

Jeffrey Douglas
Jeffrey Douglas own a landscaping company and has been in the business for over 20 years. He loves all things related to lawns or gardens and believes that proper maintenance is the key to preventing problems in the first place.
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